Launching our first initiative:The Cyber Cafe Project.

Objectives: To try and bridge the digital divide. To re-create/redirect/relaunch the cyber-café’ culture. To connect virtual and real worlds.

Cyber café’s are places all over the world and in South Asia where people go to use the Internet. It is one’s gateway to the world. These are places in the flat world where negotiations happen between the real and the virtual communities that one is a part of.

People in the sub-continent use the Internet for various purposes, and what this project seeks to do is to use the Internet to connect locales that already have had a shared common culture in the past.

But what we don’t know is what has changed, and we don’t know what could be possible in terms of cultural exchange through technology. We also don’t know the structure and texture of this Internet technology.

What do you use it for, what do you look at, what do you seek?

It is understood that livelihood drives the chunk of operations on the Internet. E-business is an emerging trend in India, so also is e-governance. I’m not that aware about Pakistan and Bangladesh.

In this sense, what is the citizen of this new combined culture and ‘State’ going to be like? In what ways is s/he going to be different? What are the economic and financial opportunities that are going to open up for her and him with the dissolution of this painful border? How is s/he going to think of her/himself?

What forms of the public are s/he going to part of, where and how will she participate to engage in discourses about her rights, her freedom and her life in general?

These are some of the questions that we will ask people.

a.Where do you use the Internet from?

b.Tell us where your nearest cyber-café is.

c.How much does it charge you per hour to use the Internet?

d.Is Internet free, or does it come with censorship?

e.What are the sites that you would usually use or look at?

f.What has the Internet done for you?

g.Most importantly how has the Internet helped you create, hone or channelise your identity?

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